I’ve tried all the major German Oktoberfestbiers and none have really
impressed me that much. Mostly I’ve been grading them on how bad they
aren’t. But along comes Paulaner Oktoberfest, a beer that is genuinely
good and by far the best of its brethren.
I poured an 11.2oz bottle into my OktoBEERfest mug.
Appearance: Beautiful dark copper/light brown hue. Plenty of visible
carbonation. Forms a large, ivory-colored, foamy head which is slow to
dissipate and leaves minor lacing on the glass.
Smell: Despite the dark olive-green colored bottle there was absolutely
no skunkiness to the nose. I actually detect amber grain with hints of
Taste: I knew Paulaner Oktoberfest was the best of the German
Oktoberfestbiers upon the first swig. The first thing I noticed was
there was no sour or off-flavors to the palate. It’s not just clean, but
genuinely flavorful. Not quite as bitter as some of the others, but
certainly more sweet without coming off as gimmicky or cloying. Mild up
front with a rush of caramel and toffee flavors at the apex of the
palate. Subtle dry bitterness as it begins its decent with additional
sweetness just before it finishes cleanly.
While this isn’t the most delicious or most impressive beer of all time,
it’s definitely the best German Oktoberfest you can buy in the United
States. A clean, genuinely flavorful palate that true beer drinkers can
appreciate, while remaining clean and mild enough for your average Joe
Six Pack to enjoy.
Drinkability: Like any other dark lager, Paulaner Oktoberfest is fairly
crisp but not overly spastic in the mouth. Slightly thin, it’s easy on
the tongue and easy to drink in bigger gulps. The 5.8% ABV is average
for the style, but this one definitely has the most flavor which makes
it the most efficient Oktoberfestbier in my book.